My Last Ironman Event?

With one more 70.3 race scheduled for 2017 (Ironman 70.3 Pula, Croatia), I've been reflecting on the Ironman brand events I've done so far.  

I started these because I wanted to do an Ironman.  It was a genuine challenge and at the outset I didn't know whether I'd succeed.

Having completed Ironman Maastricht in 2016, 2017 year has been something of an anti-climax.

At the start of the year I decided that a second Ironman would suffer from the law of diminishing marginal returns - the first would always be the best.  So I focused on 70.3 half-Ironman events and tried to go faster.

I failed.  Last year the 70.3 events were just warm-ups for the big event, but I was still faster than this year when they've been the main focus.

There are several reasons for this.

* Firstly, a lack of training - I've done fewer hours than when preparing for a full Ironman.

* Secondly, a lack of motivation - I wanted very badly to finish that first Ironman, whereas just 'doing well' in a race I knew I could complete was not a strong enough goal for me.

* Finally, I've had a lingering virus (the GP thinks, but isn't sure).  It arrived in March and still lays me low after several particularly hard sessions in a row.

I've reached the conclusion that I need a new, different type of athletic challenge.  I'm not sure yet what it will be.

Our local playground
I'm looking at Adventure Triathlons, Swim Run, Adventure Racing and more.  In 2018 I'll move up a 'Triathlon Age Group' (my age on 31 Dec 2018) and will, in the eyes of British Triathlon, be aged 60.  Bloody hell - SIXTY!  How did that happen?  Consequently I need to do something special.

Previously, the best challenges have found me rather than the other way around.  I'm sure something will turn up.

A local ride
As I write I'm fairly sure it will not be another Ironman 70.3 event.

Right now I feel I've had enough of swimming in protected water, cycling on closed roads and running on tarmac and concrete between aluminium barriers.

Don't get me wrong, I am looking forward to Ironman 70.3 Pula in Croatia.

Although, if I'm honest I'm more excited about the road-trip we've built around it.

We're driving to Croatia in our van and plan to also spend time in the mountains and swimming among the islands of the Dalmatian Coast.

My love of the mountains and the sea are reasserting themselves.  I'm on the lookout for a fresh athletic challenge.

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